Projects include working with artists developing their skills and confidence, bringing together artists with museums, collectors, architects, designers and decorators.
Joanna Bird at London Craft Week 2017
03 May 2017
British potter Chris Keenan, Fashion designer, Margaret Howell and Joanna Bird, ceramics consultant and curator, discuss the similarities in their process to work, searching out truth to materials and authenticity.
Chris began working with clay in his mid-thirties when he began a two year apprenticeship with Edmund de Waal. His collection includes beakers, bowls, cups, teapots, jugs and pots for flowers. Most recently, Chris spent six weeks as Artist-in-Residence at the Mashiko Museum of Ceramic Art in Japan working with local clays and glazes. He was invited to fire work in the salt-glaze and noborigama kilns of Tomoo Hamada.
Margaret Howell has been designing understated, high-quality clothes since 1970. Inspired by nature, mid-20th-century furniture design and figures such as Mr James Dean and artist Mr Ben Nicholson, Ms Howell’s vision is unerringly tasteful, assured and practical.
Booking is essential as places on the tour are limited, tickets cost £9.60 and are available here.
Those on the tour will be met between 10.40 – 10.50, at South London Gallery, 65-67 Peckham Road, SE5 8UH and continue on to Vanguard Court.
In Conversation at Vanguard Studio
11.00 – 12.00
03 May 2017
Joanna Bird talk at Messums Wiltshire
Sat 29 April 2017
Making a collection: Abstraction in clay
Messums Wiltshire welcomes Anthony Shaw, founder of The Anthony Shaw Collection and Joanna Bird, consultant curator to Material: Earth to discuss Anthony’s collection which is on long term loan to CoCA, York Museums Trust.
It is one of Britain’s most important private collections of modern studio ceramics. A major holding of over 1200 works by some eighty artists acquired over 44 years. Within it there are important works by Lucie Rie, Hans Coper, Sara Radstone, Ewen Henderson, Gordon Baldwin and Gillian Lowndes amongst others. A couturier, Anthony has travelled widely from his early childhood, educated by these experiences he appreciates ceramics as Art and has developed a very personal aesthetic.
They will be talking about how the collection came about, specific influences, where is has been housed and how Anthony has engaged with its development.
Booking is strongly advised with tickets costing £10.00 or £15.00 on the door and are available here.
Making a collection: Abstraction in clay.
11.00 – 12.00
Sat 29 April 2017
Richard Batterham Film – We need you!
The Joanna Bird Foundation is currently fundraising for our next project, a film about potter Richard Batterham.
Richard is a master potter and represents an increasingly rare breed. He is one of the last surviving exponents of the studio pottery movement that flourished in the first half of the twentieth century and is a direct link to towering figures of the past such as Bernard Leach and Michael Cardew. The film will be the first of a series to be made by The Joanna Bird Foundation.
We are very excited to be working with Sir David Attenborourgh and Nigel Slater, who will be contributing to the film. Both have strong connections with ceramics and are great admirers of Richard and his work.
This year Richard is eighty, still running what is essentially a one-man show at his studio in Dorset. Rejecting notions of haste and commercialism that he feels are all too present in modern society he works with tide-like regularity digging his own clay and preparing glazes from the trees in his garden. His work is based on his philosophy and the resulting pieces are not only beautiful to behold and satisfying to use but imbued with a deep integrity. Tanya Harrod has said of his work, “These pots are for us – ordinary people – not for museums.” This holds true, his notable fan club love and use his pots daily and Museums have also found his work irresistible, the V&A amongst many others have acquired his work.
We will be working with award winning arts filmmaker, Alex J. Wright who has created films on Takeshi Yasuda, and Lisa Hammond among others. His recent piece Lee Kang-hyo: Onggi Master is currently being shown as part of the Crafts Council’s Real to Reel film festival. Alex is well qualified to take on this project, he is passionate about pottery and the culture surrounding it.
Such a project cannot be undertaken without funding and I am seeking your support in any donation you would like to offer, to make it happen. We are seeking a total of £9,500. The film will help to make a significant contribution to the world of art and craft in particular by informing and inspiring future generations whilst preserving the legacy of this truly remarkable man, one of the few surviving Mingei artists, our National Living Treasure.
We have had a tremendous response so far and have already received over £6,500. However, we still have a way to go to reach our goal. It would be wonderful if you were able to contribute towards this project to help create a memorable film with us.
Please made donations payable to:
Please get in touch so we can send you a short form to enable us to claim gift aid on your donation
Richard Batterham, Master Potter is available on DVD with all proceeds going to the Joanna Bird Foundation.
£12 + P&P
To order your copy, please contact email@example.com
Joanna Bird at London Craft Week
As part of London Craft Week, Joanna will be leading a curated tour around the artists’ studios of Vanguard Court in South London.
Joanna will be introducing this very special event and giving her view on contemporary studio practices and how they relate to the historic Studio Pottery Movement.
The tour combines a fascinating look into the life of these artists – their busy studio practices – the thoughts and inspirations behind their unique creations. Get the chance to meet the artists, watch them at work and hear more about their creative practice.
Booking is essential as places on the tour are limited, tickets cost £18 and are available here
Those on the tour will be met between 13.40 – 13.50, at South London Gallery, 65-67 Peckham Road, SE5 8UH and continue on to Vanguard Court.
Vanguard Studio Tour
14.00 – 15.30
03 May 2016
South London Gallery
65 – 67 Peckham Road
Sandy Brown at Beyond Limits, Chatsworth
Sandy Brown has been commissioned by Sotheby’s to create an exciting large scale installation for the 2015 Sotheby’s Beyond Limits exhibition at Chatsworth House, through Joanna Bird.
Sandy has created a magnificent Temple which stands over 6 metres tall and includes over 5,200 handmade decorated ceramic tiles. It has taken her 11 months to complete and it is a major work, with an air of exuberance, colour and vitality. The inside is a riot of colour set off by eight bright fused glass windows by Simon Moore.
Temple has a very spiritual feel, it is non denominational and a place for quiet contemplation.
For this piece, Sandy drew inspiration from her visits to Venice, the Taj Mahal, the Blue Mosque in Isfahan as well as from Chagall and Matisse. Temple is an expression of joy and free thought, where people may find the opportunity for reflection and inspiration.
This year’s tenth anniversary edition of Beyond Limits, will demonstrate the breadth and impact of half a century of British artistic achievement.
Click here to view Sotheby’s video of Temple.
Sandy and Joanna previously worked together on the Grange Park Opera project in 2013.
14 September 2015 – 25 October 2015 | Chatsworth
Decorex International 2015
20 - 23 September 2015
This project has a theme, working to recreate the iconic Regency architectural style of Robert and James Adam with new designs from the Museum’s licensees. These design houses are leaders in their fields and include: Ossowski, Chesney’s, Haddenstone’s, Hector Finch Lighting, Jonathan Burden, Locker & Riley, The Odd Chair Company and Surface View. They have all worked closely with the Museum, researching the Adam drawings in the collection as a source of inspiration for their designs.
Decorex International opens on the 20 – 23 September 2015 at Syon Park, London.
Visit the Sir John Soane’s Museum on stand B21.
The North Sketch Sequence Publication
The North Sketch Sequence is the largest contemporary ceramic installation ever to be installed in a Grade II listed house. Made up of 659 handmade ceramic panels, the work depicts the DNA sequence of the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire.
The publication includes essays by respected experts, who explore the dynamics between art, science and architecture. The publication also follows the four year journey from conception to installation of the work along with full colour images of the installation at different times of day, captured in different lights.
The book launch was held at the Architectural Association Bookshop on 2 June 2015.
The publication also includes contributions from respected experts in their fields:
The Duke of Devonshire KCVO, CBE, DL
Peter Inskip MBE
Jacob van der Beugel
The North Sketch Sequence publication is now available to buy at the price of £8 (+1.60 UK p&p). To order please email your details to firstname.lastname@example.org
The North Sketch Sequence by Jacob van der Beugel at Chatsworth
The North Sketch Sequence is an entire ceramic room created using textured, handmade ceramic panels created by artist, Jacob van der Beugel. Lining the walls of the North Sketch Gallery each of the 659 warm, ochre coloured panels is unique and can fit only in one place. It is the most ambitious permanent ceramic installation ever to be constructed in a Grade I listed house.
Using samples from the Duke and Duchess, their son Lord Burlington and his wife Lady Burlington, the panels are embedded with a depiction of the Devonshire family’s DNA. Aspects of each individual’s personality are captured on raised ceramic blocks representing their personal DNA strand in an unusual and creative take on the traditional portrait.
It is a major work of art, and in the Duke of Devonshire’s words, ‘The most important addition to the house since the Sculpture Gallery was added in 1832.’ It is also the largest handmade contemporary ceramic installation ever to be installed in a country house.
The North Sketch Sequence is a landmark in Jacob’s career as both conceptual artist and master craftsman. It took four years to complete the project, completely covering the 20m long gallery. The panels are a new departure for Jacob, and he is now looking to extend his practice further by exploring new wall-mounted forms leading on from The North Sketch Sequence.
“A beautiful poetic work which is exemplary in the way it manages to turn information (of which we have so much, and which usually leaves us so cold) into art (which touches our hearts).”
Alain de Botton on The North Sketch Sequence
The installation also won the prestigious CODAaward for best interior in the residential category. The annual CODAaward celebrates the best design and art projects from all over the world. Jacob’s installation was chosen from over 336 entries from 32 countries.
The North Sketch Sequence is on permanent display at Chatsworth House, Derbyshire, UK.
Sandy Brown at Grange Park Opera
Joanna Bird was invited to show a pop up art installation for Grange Park Opera in 2013.
Sandy Brown’s large sculptures Prelude and Lentissimo looked wonderful in front of and inside the auditorium.
Stretching to over 3.5m tall Prelude created a dramatic statement with high visual impact.